March 3, 2011 in Books
To celebrate World Book Day (that’s today, in case you’d overlooked the timeliness of the post), we thought we’d bring you a book from each continent. So here we go.
The Devil That Danced on The Water
Aminatta Forna’s wrote a moving semi-memoir and a paean to a Sierra Leone that is lost to civil war.
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, Antarctica
The coldest continent is perhaps written about far more than a place barely anyone’s been to should have been, but a segment in Michael Chabon’s excellent fictional history of American comics industry approaches it fairly unconventionally.
The Thousand Autumns of Jacob De Zoet – Asia
David Mitchell’s most recent book tells the tale of a clerk working in the Dutch East India Company who is allowed more than a glance into the secretive culture of early nineteenth century Japan.
Riddley Walker – Europe
In post-apocalyptic Kent, Russell Hoban deconstructs and reconstructs written English in a tour-de-force of creativity. If you are really in a reading mood, and have a few days to commit to it without distractions, there are few better reads.
The Mystery of the Hansom Cab, Australasia
Set in Victorian-era Melbourne Fergus Humes’ mystery outsold Sherlock Holmes when it was first unleashed on the world, following Humes’ self-funded initial run at home. It has been described as a crucial turning point in the history of the detective novel.
Come Thou Tortoise, North America
Jessica Grant’s book about a naïve ‘leapling’ (someone born on 29 February) splits its time between her return home to Newfoundland following her father’s death, and the exploits of Winnifred, her lonely tortoise left behind with friends while Audrey undertakes a long journey back into memories of her childhood.
One Hundred Years of Solitude – South America
In an ever-changing found paradise/hell in Latin America, master of magical realism Gabriel Garcia Marquez weaves the unconventional epic of several generations of a particularly long-lived family.